When Jesus came, everything changed. The old covenant with God, as given to Moses, was replaced with a new covenant promise from God. No longer was there separation between man and God. Jesus is the way, the truth and the life. Because of Jesus, we can now approach our Father God.
So, what is the “glory” of God? I could spend hours researching it, and I’m sure my husband will correct me and hand me the exact books I need if I’m totally off base here. To me, simply put, the glory of God is his majesty manifested into tangible form. God is full of light, and that light, his glory, shines brightly when we’re in his presence.
We remember when Moses encountered God, God’s majesty was all around him. Moses returned to the people with a covering over his face because he had been in God’s presence, and the brightness of God’s glory was still being reflected in Moses. Similarly, the story of Jesus’ transfiguration when Peter, James, and John accompany him to the top of the mountain and Jesus’ clothes became dazzling white. That was the glory of God being shone on Jesus.
In the new covenant, we have access to God, too. We can come away with a brightness shining in us as well. As we are transformed by God’s grace and mercy, we shine. Haven’t you met someone who is totally on fire for Jesus? Don’t you just love how their eyes sparkle and their skin seems to radiate? That’s what I want to look like. I want people to know without a doubt that I belong to Jesus. I want to be transformed to be more like Jesus!
As Paul says in verse 8, “Shouldn’t we expect far greater glory under the new way, now that the Holy Spirit is giving life?” Indeed! When the Holy Spirit is alive in us, we are aglow. “Since this new way gives us such confidence, we can be very bold.” We will face opposition in the world, we will face temptation. But we can boldly face those struggles and trials when we rely on the confidence the new covenant affords. God has reconciled us to himself through Jesus. We are not alone. But we often forget that, don’t we?
What does it mean to you to be a Christ follower? Do you feel special? Does the promise of eternity give you peace? As I write this reflection, the world is seeing a crisis unlike ever before. There is fear, and there is panic. The pandemic is threatening to change the world as we know it. For how long, it’s not clear. As Christ followers, we have a solution other people don’t have. We can pray. We can’t change the events around us, but we can pray.
When circumstances are out of our control, we can turn to God. Jesus has given us that permission. “So all of us who have had that veil removed can see and reflect the glory of the Lord. And the Lord—who is the Spirit—makes us more and more like him as we are changed into his glorious image.” We can shine for God amidst the storm. We can use this time to draw closer and become more Christ-like in all we say and do. Let God’s glory surround you and restore your peace and joy.
Let’s pray … Lord, your glory is bright and full of hope. Thank you for giving us access to you. I can’t imagine what it would be like to not be able to talk to you, pray to you, sing your praises, etc. Lord, wash over me and those I love with a new sense of peace and calm amidst this storm. Help us to trust and to pray and not be swept up in the confusion and chaos. We stand against the evil one’s schemes to divide and devour. Thank you that you are in control. In Jesus’ name.